Recently, I learned that the Department of Agriculture approved a petition by the National Chicken Council to allow slaughterhouses to simply cut tumors off chickens while continuing to process the rest of the bird.
So it’s possible that the chickens that are neatly packaged in the supermarket, could have had tumors, lesions, cancer and other dis-eases before being sold to consumers 🙁
Y’all that’s gross.
As a Conscious Carnivore, I enjoy a good piece of chicken every now and then . . . but this made me vow to find the best plant-based alternatives so I could still enjoy the foods I like to eat. And I like a nice piece of crunchy fried chicken . . . er cauliflower every now and then. And I came up with a recipe that will make you leave Popeyes, Tyson and the rest of them alone. Go on…..take a bite 🙂
Buffalo Cauliflower Wings
This crunchy buffalo style cauliflower wings comes together using a variety of spices and mindful intuition to flavor them! Note, there are no exact measurements for seasoning . . . just trust your taste buds!
- 1 head of cauliflower, cut into bite size pieces
- cayenne pepper
- curry powder
- cumin-coriander blend
- shawarma spice
- Levi Roots Caribbean Seasoning
- Crystals or Texas Pete Hot Sauce
- Pickapeppa Sauce
- Apple Cider Vinegar
- Liquid smoke
- Smoked Paprika
- Garlic powder
- Olive oil (for coating cauliflower)
- Neutral tasting Coconut oil (for frying)
- Besam / Chickpea flour
- Water or Non-dairy milk
- Almond flour
- All Purpose Flour
- Green onion for garnish
- Vegan ranch dressing (for dipping)
- PREP + COOK CAULIFLOWER
- Preheat oven 375 degrees
- Add your cauliflower to a bowl
- And add in your spices. Don’t fret if you don’t have all of these. The idea is to treat this cauliflower as if it were chicken. Remember that cauliflower is super bland. If you were cooking chicken, what would you season it with? Onion powder? Garlic powder? Use what you have on hand.
- I used cayenne for a bit of kick. Adobo for all purpose seasoning. A pinch of Curry powder because I always added this when I cooked meat. Cumin-coriander because I love how it deepens and brightens the flavor. Shawarma spice because it really does meat-like dishes sing! Levi Roots seasoning because it’s just quintessential flavor. Louisiana style vinegared hot sauce (not the strong Thai, West African nor Caribbean pepper sauces). Pickapeppa sauce because this deepens the flavor. Apple cider vinegar because I like how it tangs. Liquid smoke because I like the smokiness.
- Now drizzle with a bit of olive oil. Shake the bowl to make sure all pieces are coated and fully flavored.
- Notice I didn’t use salt because I felt these were sufficient. However, because it’s cauliflower and not raw meat, you can taste it and see if yours needs it!
- Place the cauliflower on a non-stick baking sheet/roasting pan and roast approx. 10-15 minutes until edges are crisp. (This is the step that would be similar to “searing” if were using real chicken)
- Remove the cauliflower and wrap in parchment paper and then wrap that in foil. Parchment paper will create a chemically safe environment for the cauliflower to steam. The foil will help lock in moisture without touching the food.
- Return to oven and roast for another 15-20 minutes or until the bite is soft. Remember these are gonna be your “chicken” pieces, so consider how you want these to feel in your mouth when you bite.
- Your cooking time will vary based on how you want your texture and how much cauliflower you have.
- Once cooking for texture is complete, remove from the oven, open parchment/foil paper, make sure cauliflower is laying flat and set aside. (Also, you can eat the cauliflower as is if you want, but if you want that perfect, crunchy texture then advance to the next step)
- PREP WET
- In a bowl you are going to make a thin pancake like batter. This is where I would love to give you exact measurements, but this really all depends on the amount of cauliflower you have. Consider how much you’ll need to coat each cauliflower fully. I tend to make about 1.5 – 2 cups worth of wet batter.
- Start by adding some chickpea flour to the bowl. Then slowly stream in either water or non-dairy milk while whisking until you get a nice thin pancake like batter.
- To this wet batter add a dollop of pickapeppa sauce and hot sauce plus a dash of apple cider vinegar and liquid smoke.
- Taste it. Do you like the way the flavors are? If not, adjust.
- Also, feel free to omit the extra seasonings in the wet batter and just stick to the chickpea flour and water or non-dairy milk. I like seasoning at every level so I tend to go in!
- PREP DRY MIX
- Again, using mindfulness, think about how much you’ll need to coat your cauliflower. Mix equal parts of arrowroot powder (makes extra crisp), almond flour (adds crunch) and All purpose Flour to a bowl.
- If you don’t have all of these flours, then just use the All Purpose flour. But I highly encourage you to use all 3 cause it makes the PERFECT CRUNCH!
- To that dry flour mix, add a dash of smoked paprika for extra flavor. You should add enough of this spice that when properly mixed in, the flour mixture color goes from white/beige to sandy pink. We don’t want white flour with red random occasional spots, we want a full on transformation.
- TIME TO FRY
- Heat coconut oil or any other neutral tasting high heat oil
- Once heated, using tongs, take a roasted cauliflower–> dip into wet batter –> douse in dry batter –> dip again into wet batter —> douse again in dry batter –> drop immediately into hot oil
- Make sure you use tongs to turn cauliflower around for even frying on all sides. Once browned (about 4 minutes) remove from oil and drain on paper towel.
- Repeat until complete
- Once complete, you can add them as is . . . but I like my wings sauced.
- MAKE BUFFALO SAUCE
- In a small pot, melt 2 TB coconut oil and then add your hot sauce and garlic powder.
- Mix it until it tastes like what you want. I eyed my cauliflower wings and made enough sauce to cover them. You will have to rely on your taste buds to make this. Add the hot sauce and garlic powder according to tastes.
- Once sauce is satisfactory, drizzle on your wings and toss.
- AND SERVE! by themselves or accompanies with ranch dipping sauce